Carlos Santana Delivers New EP, "In Search of Mona Lisa", Due January 25
the guitar superstar channels his encounter with Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece
- Genre : Rock
- Type: News
- Author : Team ARTISTdirect
- Date : Wed, 09 Jan 2019
Legendary musician Carlos Santana will release a dramatic new EP, In Search of Mona Lisa, on January 25 via Concord Records. On three spellbinding and transportive new songs, the multiple GRAMMY-winning guitarist and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee takes listeners inside a magical and deeply personal experience he had when he visited the Louvre Museum for the first time and set his eyes on Leonardo da Vinci’s beguiling masterpiece.
In all of the years that the guitar icon had visited Paris, he had never been to the Louvre, but on a recent day off while on tour, he decided to go to the museum with his wife, drummer Cindy Blackman Santana, and his family. All it took was one look into the implacable eyes of the Mona Lisa for Santana to feel as though something strange and powerful was taking place.
As he recalls, “I heard her say to me, ‘Hi.’ It was stunning, and I didn’t know what to say back, so I just said, ‘Hi.’ And then she said, ‘Do you remember me? When we were lovers in another time?’ It was the most incredible occurrence, and in a way, it was kind of perfect that I had never been to the Louvre before, because this might not have happened at another time. I had to be who I am now, knowing that God is everywhere and that He was saying, ‘I love you,’ by sending me this message of inspiration and visualization.”
The experience came flooding back to Santana months later, when he awoke from a dream with the lyrics to what would become the songs “In Search of Mona Lisa” and “Do You Remember Me” fully formed in his mind. “It was the first time that I ever woke up and lyrics were there in a tangible way,” he reveals. “I could just grab them and write the songs.”
Much in the same way that the Mona Lisa asked, “Do you remember me?” Santana begins the song of the same name with a striking guitar figure, an invitation to dance. Once the band kicks in with a graceful Afro-Cuban groove (courtesy of Cindy on drums, with Karl Perazzo on congas, timbales and percussion), Santana opens up on a full five minutes of some of his most gorgeous soloing yet – his lead lines are stinging, teasing, crying and sensuous – before singers Andy Vargas and Ray Greene take over.
Remarkably, the song was captured in a single take in which Santana and his band recorded with Rick Rubin at the renowned producer’s Shangri-la Studio in Malibu. “Miles Davis and Bob Dylan always said that the first take is the best, and I have to agree,” Santana says. “You can hear the innocence in the music. That’s a nutrient